LEMKEN has acquired the Dutch manufacturer of innovative mechanical weed control implements, Steketee.

The main aim of this is to expand its own crop care product portfolio, including future-oriented camera-assisted machine control as Steketee’s proprietary camera technology supports farmers in controlling their machines precisely and facilitates both conventional hoeing between rows and hoeing between plants within a row.

As part of the deal it also gets Steketee’s soil cultivation division, Rumptstad, but not its crop ventilation technology business.

“The acceptance of chemical crop care agents is decreasing, both among farmers and within the broader society,” pointed out Lemken's managing director, Anthony van der Ley. “At the same time, resistance against currently available active substances is continually increasing, while hardly any new substances are coming onto the market.

“Also, legal requirements are becoming more and more stringent, and we therefore need effective alternatives,” he added. “Given the widespread use of herbicides, they offer the greatest potential for reducing the use of chemical crop care products. Lemken is fully aware of this responsibility and we intend to promote mechanical weed control by adding hoeing technology to our product range.” Lemken said it would work to expand the company’s Dutch facilities and build on its existing manufacturing capacities.